Every 6th candidate in first phase UP polls has serious criminal charges

Every 6th candidate in first phase UP polls has serious criminal charges

One in six candidates in the first phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls has serious criminal charges against him/her while one in three candidates is a crorepati.

Of the 836 candidates who filed nominations for the first phase of polls, 143 (17%) have serious charges against them while 302 (36%) are crorepatis.

Seventy-three constituencies in western Uttar Pradesh are going to polls on Saturday where the BJP, Samajwadi Party, BSP, Congress and the RLD are locked in a keen contest.

The BSP has 26 candidates with serious criminal charges, followed by BJP (22). Both the parties are contesting in all 73 seats, an analysis by private election watchdog Association for Democratic Rights (ADR) said.

BSP’s Awadh Pal, who is contesting from Etah, has the highest number of cases against him — 36. The RLD has 15 such candidates out of 57 fielded while the SP has 13 out of 51. The Congress has six candidates with criminal charges but none of them have serious charges against them.

Thirty-four out of 293 independents have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

The ADR analysis also showed that there are 26 constituencies in the first phase of polls having three or more candidates with declared criminal cases.

Congress’ Agra South candidate Nazir Ahamad, with assets worth Rs 211.47 crore, is the richest candidate in this phase, which has a total of 302 crorepatis.

The BSP has fielded the most number of crorepatis — 66 out of 73 — while the BJP has 61 such candidates. A total of 40 SP candidates and 18 from Congress are also crorepatis. Parvez Ali, an independent candidate from Thana Bhawan constituency, has declared zero assets in his self-sworn affidavit.

Only 70 (8%) are women candidates. This is almost the same proportion of women candidates in Punjab and Goa which went to poll on Saturday.

On the education front, 402 (48%) candidates have declared their educational qualification to be between Class 5 and Class 12 while 336 (40%) have declared having an educational qualification of graduation or above. Sixty-four candidates have declared themselves to be just literate.

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